President Ashraf Ghani and Chief Executive Abdullah Abdullah, who attended a ceremony on Armed Forces Day, paid tribute to sacrifices of Afghan National Security and Defense Forces (ANDSF) in the war against insurgency and said Afghan forces are fighting on the frontline of the battle for international peace and security.
The National Unity Government leaders also pledged to use all resources for further improvement of the Afghan forces.
“Once again, I want to assure the people of Afghanistan that the dignity and status of the Afghan forces will not be compromised under any circumstances,” Ghani said. “Afghan forces are the assets of the nation. If someone wants to damage and destroy this asset, he does not belong to this country.”
Ghani said that no political change and political agreement will undermine the sacrifices and gains of the brave security forces,” noted Ghani.
The two leaders said the Afghan National Security and Defense Force have the full support of the nation and government.
“Peace will come, because there is no justification for war. I call on the Taliban to bring at least one reason that their war is legitimate. What the Taliban is fighting for? You are fighting against whom? The national unity government provides you the opportunity to talk to the world. If you want an office, we will give it to you, you cannot come out from the blacklist without our approval,” Ghani said.
“What is you ties with Pakistan?” Ghani asked, referring to Taliban-Pakistan ties.
Ghani thanked Afghanistan international partners who fought shoulder to shoulder with the Afghan security forces.
Meanwhile, Abdullah warned Taliban will be responsible for continuation of war and bloodshed in the country if they do not take the advantage of the current opportunity – for peace.
“We support the ongoing efforts for peace,” Abdullah said. “I want make it clear that Taliban should not use the opportunity for their propaganda or portray that now they (Taliban) are part of the issue, or once again prepare for military activities and come and prolong the war. Taliban should not take it like that,” he said.
Abdullah said that all in the country should undertake their responsibility to protect the civilian lives.
“Unfortunately this year civilian casualties have been high. Although main responsibility goes to the opponent side, but we also ask our security leaders to pay attention to the issue” he said.
Acting Minister of Defense Assadullah Khalid, who also addressed the event, said Afghanistan’s achievements in the past 18 years are the result of sacrifices of Afghan forces and that the gains must be protected in the peace process.
“We support a peace process where the gains of the past two decades and sacrifices of the armed forces are valued,” said Khalid.